77 Activities to Do without Spending a Dollar
- June 17, 2016
- Posted by: Jeff Gitlen
- Category: Personal Finance
The world is full of places to go and opportunities to capitalize on. If you really wanted to, you would be able come up with some new activity each weekend to keep yourself entertained. This all sounds great, but a lot of the activities in this world require money. Equal to the number of activities is the number of people who are currently trying save money. This poses a dilemma for some. How do you live your life to the fullest while still building your savings account?
Luckily, there are solutions to just about any problem, and the solution to this problem is found below. Here is an enormous (and certainly not comprehensive) list of activities to try out that do not require a cent (disclaimer: some of these require only a couple cents). There are bound to be some options here that can be found in any area. Keep this list handy if you ever need an idea for a frugal weekend, a fun week night, a relaxing/therapeutic experience, or any random time you feel bored.
The list is in no particular order, and the ideas vary considerably.
1. Go to the Public Library
This may seem like an outdated option, but the public library is practically overflowing with knowledge, fictional stories, and almost anything you can think of. The possibilities are truly endless, and you can keep going back for new books every week. The best part is that everything is usually free.
2. Join a Community Sports Team
Plenty of communities have their own teams for just about any sport that is popular. The best part is the community may even pay for entry into a league, but worst case scenario, you need to split the cost among all of your teammates.
3. Play Some Board Games
If you happen to have plenty of board games left over from the past, now is the time to dig them up. Board games can absorb hours and hours of your time, and they are great for playing with friends and family.
4. Make an Instructional YouTube Video
Do you have a skill that you know like the back of your hand? Creating an instructional tutorial is a great way to spread the word on that skill. Get the word out with a free YouTube channel next weekend.
5. Learn Origami
Here is a nifty skill that can prove to be an interesting lesson one afternoon. Learn how to sculpt origami from printer paper, and maybe you will have a cool party trick as a result.
6. Make a Time Capsule
Plainly put, time capsules are cool. Opening up a time capsule after so many years is an awesome experience that triggers quite a bit of nostalgia. Create your own time capsule and find a secure place for it; it is a guaranteed good experience even if you have to wait a little while to finish it.
7. Have a Book Fair
Take a head count on all of the books in the inventory and encourage your friends to do the same. After all books are accounted for, invite everyone over for a free book fair where everyone can exchange some of their favorite books for a new read.
8. Start a Trade Garage Sale
If you have way too much stuff in your garage and attic, get rid of it! Post something on craigslist about your future garage sale. You can sell anything you do not want, or you can try to trade for something new.
9. Build Furniture on the Weekends
There are several freelancing opportunities available for anyone who enjoys crafting or building furniture. People pay very well to have furniture orders assembled for them on the weekends or weekdays.
10. Host a Bake Sale
This may cost some money depending if you have a stockpile of ingredients, or you could split the costs with a friend. Then post something online to advertise your very own bake sale to the community. You will most likely be able to make your money back after selling the goods.
11. Volunteer at a Park
This is a great option if you enjoy the outdoors. Plenty of parks accept volunteers to help with tours, park education, and park clean up, so look up some local parks that need some help and spend the day outside.
12. Volunteer at the SPCA
Whoever has been to the SPCA knows it is a pretty depressing place. If you love pets, stop by at the SPCA to walk some dogs and cuddle some cats. It can be plenty of fun, and you may end up taking back a new friend.
13. Check out Street Performances in the City
A leisurely walk through the city often uncovers some low key street performances. These are free to observe, and you can see some pretty impressive stuff.
14. Host a Karaoke Night
So long as someone has a karaoke apparatus at their disposal, hosting a sing-a-long night can prove to be a blast. Invite your friends over and sing all of your favorite tunes for a good time.
15. Visit a Museum
Researching some local museums could prove to be an educational and rewarding experience, and many museums offer free admission. Take your pick on museums and travel out for a learning experience.
16. Look for Free Concerts
This may take a ton of effort and searching, but there are occasional promotional events or concerts that offer free admission. Hopefully some of these places are nearby because they can be a great opportunity to capitalize on.
17. Write a Recipe Book
If you happen to be a cooking connoisseur, then creating your own personal cook book of your favorite recipes is probably a great low budget idea. Better yet, you can even sell your ideas.
18. Host a Budget Cooking Contest
Another cooking idea, host a cooking contest where the only rule is the ingredients must cost less than $10.
19. Try out Geocaching
Geocaching is an adventurous way to travel around the area looking for cool locations. It is a cool scavenger hunt application that is free to participate in, and you may even make some friends along the way.
20. Host a Film Festival
Invite all of your friends over for a fun film festival (or movie marathon). Everyone can bring one or two movies; with that many movie you can keep everyone entertained for hours.
21. Convert Old Pictures to Digital
If you have a large collection of old pictures, it is time to convert them to a digital format. This is easy to do if you have your own scanner, or you can use your iphone to take an easy image. This preserves your memories just in case anything happens to the originals.
Networking is an essential part of just about anyone's career. Next time you get bored start putting your name out there and making contacts. If you are lucky, you can make some positive moves towards bettering your career.
23. Try Out Yoga
Tired of your old workout routine? Yoga is something new that is more than enough to leave you sore for a while.
24. Clean up the Neighborhood
Taking some time out of your weekend to clean up some trash around the neighborhood is a good way to give back to the community; additionally, cleaning is proven to be a therapeutic activity.
25. Rearrange your House
Do you think your house's interior design is getting a bit stale? Switch it up a little and reorganize all of your rooms. You can even get some advice online by blogging about your ideas.
26. Build a Huge Blanket Fort
This idea goes all the way back to childhood, but it is still probably just as fun at age 30. The rules are simple, take anything and everything and set it up into the coolest fort possible.
27. Call an Old Friend
If you have lost contact with an old best friend, give them a call and catch up for a few hours.
28. Start an Art Portfolio
Start drawing whatever you see around and put it into an art portfolio. You do not have to be good at art in order to enjoy it.
29. Start a Personal Memoir
Plenty of people enjoy recording their personal exploits and daily life. Find a notebook lying around and start writing your autobiography.
30. Start a Garden
This may require a little bit of investment at first, but it has the potential to sustain itself throughout the years given proper treatment.
31. Host a Yard Sale
Just like a garage sale, you can have a sale out in the yard for better press coverage. Sell whatever has been lying around for the years.
32. Learn a New Language
This will definitely take up your time for a while, but learning a new language is a great way to diversify yourself.
Sometimes when you are that tired, a simple nap is all that is needed. It does not cost a thing.
34. Research the Family Tree
If you are curious about your roots, contact some of your family members to get a better grasp on your family history. You may learn a thing or two about your ancestors.
35. Do Puzzles
If you have puzzles lying around, working on them is a great way to challenge yourself mentally.
36. Create a Personal Budget
This is a boring idea, but this is a great way to gain a better understanding of your financial standing.
37. Create a Makeshift Water Park
Go outside with the hose and start playing. If you have kids, this is a perfect idea during the summer heat.
Somewhat similar to yoga, meditating is a great way to find a positive and relaxed mental state.
39. Open Source Programming Project
For all the computer programmers, open source projects are open to anyone with access to the internet. It is a great way to practice programming skills.
40. Play Cards
A deck of cards should always be handy. Playing cards is a great way to spend time with friends, family, or even yourself.
41. Go to Mass
Whether you are religious or not, a religious service has more to offer than just doctrine. They often try to spread moral enlightenment which can be a good thing to listen to.
42. Make a Makeshift Kite
On a windy day, check out Google on ways to make a makeshift kite. Test your skills outside with your contraption.
43. Learn a Card Trick
Still have that deck of cards? Look up cool tricks to do for your next party move.
44. Design a New Workout Routine
If your workout routine is getting stale and yoga is not an option, come up with a new workout routine to challenge yourself physically.
45. Go on a Long-Distance Run
This is tough to do for many people, but finishing a long run is a rewarding way to challenge your endurance.
46. Take a Swim
Chances are there is community pool or large open body of water nearby. With that being said, a leisurely swim is a great workout for anyone.
47. Write a Journal
A bit different from a personal memoir, keeping a journal is a fun way to recount your day. Especially if anything out of the ordinary occurs.
48. Make a Christmas Gift
Instead of splurging on Christmas gifts every season, look up different ways to craft gifts for your friends.
49. Learn a New Musical Instrument
Plenty of people wish they could play an instrument, so take an opportunity to learn the basics. Instead of buying one, ask around for an instrument to borrow.
50. Plan a Future Vacation
Take the time to plan out a vacation either next year or the year after. This is a fun way to set financial goals throughout the years.
51. Scavenge Some Coupons
This is bound to save money on all sorts of purchases. Walk through a couple retail stores in search of catalogues full of coupons.
52. Find the Town Newspaper
Plenty of communities have their own free newspaper which can take some time out of the weekend for a light read.
53. Play with a Friends Pet
If you love to play with pets (but lack one of your own), then ask a friend to hang out at the park to enjoy the day playing frisbee with their dog.
54. Walk Through Town
Sometimes a simple walk is the best way to kill time, and it is a perfectly free activity that only burns calories.
55. Host a Book Club
Invite your friends over for a gathering with the focus on a book. It makes for a good discussion, and you can catch up with all of your friends.
56. Take Your Kid to the Playground
If it is a nice day out, there is no reason that the community playground cannot be a good way to spend time (and not money) on the weekend.
57. Browse the Web
The world wide web is a vast resource full of just about anything you can think of. It is free to use (aside from what you already pay for), and you can learn plenty of useful information.
58. Throw out Closet Clutter
Chances are you keep a little bit too much stuff in the closet. Since cleaning is a therapeutic exercise, throwing out the extra clutter is a great and free way to relieve stress.
59. Take a Long Bath
Similar to meditating, bathing for extended periods of time is a great free way to relax.
60. Binge Watch Netflix
You might have to pay a monthly fee for Netflix, but you are not going to spend anything extra for sitting around all weekend and watching shows.
61. Go to a Dress Rehearsal
Certain events have dress rehearsals to practice for the main event, and these events are usually free to watch.
62. Join a Free Community Class
Plenty of communities offer classes to educate their citizens, so signing up for them is a great way to learn something for free.
63. Discover New Music
Music is constantly being written and posted all over the internet, so take some time to learn about the new trends in sound.
64. Play Favorite Old Video Games
This is a personal favorite. Dig up some old gaming consoles and play some of the classics again.
65. Go Stargazing
You are going to need an area with less light pollution, but checking out the stars one night is a good way to kill time cheaply.
66. Write Poetry
Expressing yourself poetically is a great way to kill time without spending a single cent.
67. Go Cycling
So long as you already have a bike, cycling is another physical activity to kill time without spending any extra money.
68. Volunteer at the Soup Kitchen
Just like cleaning up the town, volunteering your time at the community soup kitchen is a free and rewarding experience.
69. Contribute to Political Campaigns
If you are heavy into politics, then you may want to try and contribute to a local political campaign. You may even get paid for it.
70. Set Up a Blog
Creating an online blog is a great way to spread your ideas, and it is usually a very low cost endeavor.
71. Trade Movies with a Friend
Similar to a book exchange, trading movies with a friend is a good way to find new entertainment.
72. Talk on the Phone with Family
Many people are guilty of neglecting to call their family members, so taking some time to check is rewarding and free.
73. Make a Quilt
Quilts can literally be made out of any sort of sheet of cloth. The needle and string is extremely cheap, so this is a great low cost hobby to pick up.
74. Educate Yourself
Find a topic that interests you and learn all there is to know about it. Utilize free resources like the internet or public library.
75. Learn How to Knit
Knitting is an extremely low cost activity. Similar to quilting, knitting materials do not cost much.
76. Play Fantasy Sports
Unless you have to buy into a league, fantasy sports is a good way to make any sports season much more interesting without any extra cost.
77. Start a Scavenger Hunt Competition
Scavenger hunt ideas are all over the internet. With that being said, you can design a scavenger hunt for basically no cost for your friends.